IFAF European Championships resume across seven countries

Fans of tackle football across the European continent will be treated to a wealth of top-class action during the weekend of August 5-6 when the 2023 IFAF European Championships continue in seven countries.

Austria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Great Britain, Ireland, and Israel all host first round games, which will in turn decide the pairings for the championship, medal and placement games to be played on October 21-22.

The action begins at 13:00 (all times local) on Saturday, August 5, in Vantaa when five-time champions Finland host Scandinavian rivals and 2021 silver medalists Sweden at the Myyrmäki Stadion. The winners of that game will play for the European title against the winners of Austria versus reigning champion Italy, who clash in a game broadcast live on ORF at the Innsbruck Tivoli Stadium at 17:00 on Sunday, August 6.

“Playing in front of a home crowd is of course a special incentive to give our best and beat the team that defeated us at the last European Championship (in the group stages) this time,” said Austria head coach Max Sommer. “We are definitely aiming for revenge and want to establish the hierarchy in Europe the way we like it: namely with Austria at the top.”

Italy won the inaugural men’s championship back in 1983, claimed silver two years later and gold in 1987. They ended a 24-year wait to again scale such heights in 2021 by beating Sweden 41-14 in the final.

Saturday’s action continues at 14:00 when the 1989 and 1991 champions Great Britain host the 2018 champions and fourth-place finisher from 2021, France, at the Butts Park Arena in Coventry. When fifth place is up for grabs in October, the winner will meet either Denmark or Serbia, who face off at the Copenhagen Gentofte Stadion at 16:00 on Saturday, August 5.

“We are all so excited to be hosting a Great Britain men’s game again and look forward to welcoming the French,” said GB head coach Jason Scott. “This contest represents a huge test for us. This will be a benchmark to see how far we have come.

“I firmly believe that this is the best American Football that anyone will see in the UK, outside of the International Series games. The best European talent is on your doorstep. Whether you’re a Britball fan, a fan of American Football, or just love watching elite sport, this game is a must attend event.”

Saturday also sees Ireland take on Turkey at the MTU Stadium in Bishopstown, Cork at 15:00 in a direct final ranking game for 15th place overall.

On Sunday, the Czech Republic hosts Switzerland at 16:00 at the Masarykova in Ústí nad Labem for the right to take on Hungary in October for ninth place overall. Hungary advanced automatically due to the non-participation of the national team from Russia.

Finally, to conclude an action-packed weekend, at 19:30 on Sunday at the Kraft Family Sports Campus in Jerusalem, Israel will host Spain. The winner will face Germany in October as the two-time European champions bid to return to the top level of continental tackle competition.

Saturday, August 5 (all times local)

Finland vs Sweden, Myyrmäki Stadion, Vantaa, 13:00
Great Britain vs France, Butts Park Arena, Coventry, 14:00
Ireland vs Turkey, MTU Stadium, Bishopstown Cork, MTU, 15:00
Denmark vs Serbia, Copenhagen Gentofte Stadion, 16:00

Sunday, August 6 (all times local)

Czechia vs Switzerland, Masarykova, Ústí nad Labem, 16:00
Austria vs Italy, Tivoli Stadium, Innsbruck, 17:00
Israel vs Spain, Kraft Family Sports Campus, Jerusalem, 19:30

The venues for the medal and placement games to be played in October will be decided by a bidding process in September.

Winner Italy/Austria vs Winner Sweden/Finland for IFAF European Championship
Loser Italy/Austria vs Loser Sweden/Finland for 3rd place
Winner Serbia/Denmark vs Winner France/Great Britain for 5th place
Loser Serbia/Denmark vs Loser France/Great Britain for 7th place
Winner Switzerland/Czechia vs Hungary for 9th place
Loser Switzerland/Czechia awarded 11th place
Winner Spain/Israel vs Germany for promotion to Group A (12th place)
Russia relegated to Group B (13th place)
Loser Spain/Israel places 14th
Winner Ireland/Turkey places 15th
Loser Ireland/Turkey places 16th

Read original article on IFAF website.

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